Uphold obtains FINRA approval to acquire US broker-dealer

The acquisition will reportedly allow Uphold to launch fractional equities in the United States in 2021.

Cryptocurrency wallet and trading platform Uphold has received regulatory approval to purchase JNK Securities, a U.S. broker-dealer.

In an announcement from Uphold today, the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, or FINRA, gave the firm the green light to acquire JNK Securities. Uphold said the acquisition is aimed at allowing the platform to launch fractional equities in the United States later this year in addition to providing an interface for users to trade between crypto, stocks, carbon credits, precious metals, and other assets.

“Bitcoin to Tesla stock in one seamless user experience will soon become a reality for our U.S. customers,” said Uphold CEO JP Thieriot. “The move will introduce unprecedented speed and convenience for retail investors seeking to trade between traditional and emerging asset classes.”

According to Uphold, this would make the platform one of the first crypto firms to own a broker-dealer approved to offer equities on an omnibus basis to retail investors in the U.S. Investors would be able to purchase fractions of a stock in much the same way crypto users do not have to buy an entire Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), or any number of tokens. The firm said it plans to increase its equities offering from 50 U.S. stocks to 3,500 stocks and options in 2021.

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